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The greatest of the Mughal emperors, Jalal ad-Din Akbar (1542-1603) was a formidable military tactician and popular demagogue. Ascending to the throne at the age of thirteen, he ruled for half a century, expanded the Mughal empire, and left behind a legacy to rival his infamous ancestors Chinggis Khan and Timur. Renowned for his attempts to integrate the diverse religious heritage of India, he was a true polymath who although illiterate was widely active in a number of intellectual pursuits.

In this fascinating biography, Andre Wink provides glimpses into Akbar’s daily life and highlights his contribution to new methods of imperial control, surveillance and record-keeping. Contrasting his reign with those of his nomadic Mongol ancestors, this lucid study is an essential read for anyone interested in the history of India and South Asia.

CONTENTS


Acknowledgments



INTRODUCTION



1 DIVINE NURSLING OF THE GARDEN OF SOVEREIGNTY

Akbar’s birth

Separated from his parents

Akbar’s education

2 AN OLD WORLD GREW YOUNG



3 THE DAILY INCREASING DOMINION

The Mughal army

The conquest of Gujarat

Kabul, the North-West Frontier, and the “Great Game” of the sixteenth century

The conquest of Bengal



4 CLOUDS AND ELEPHANTS AND MUD

Episode one: 1564–1566

Episode two: 1574

Episode three: 1589



5 TAMING THE MONGOL BEASTS

The new court etiquette

From Chingis Khan to Akbar: the rise of Mughal civilization in the sixteenth century

Maxims of order

Hunting and government

Mongol vegetarians

The emperor never wastes his time



6 MAKER OF THE INDO-MUSLIM WORLD

Gunpowder empires

American silver

The imperial political system and its Indian foundations

Land revenue and the peasantry

7 SERENE CITY OF UNIVERSAL TOLERANCE

Akbar and Islam

The Religion of God

Peace for all

Allahu Akbar

After Akbar: the demise of the Religion of God



8 BEING AKBAR



Endnotes

Further Reading

Bibliography

Index

  • Publisher: Oneworld Academic (December 1, 2012)
  • Length: 136 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781780742090

More books in this series: Makers of the Muslim World